Bob Jones University recently welcomed Dr. Richard Stratton as the new dean of the School of Business. He succeeds Mike Buiter, who has moved to a part-time faculty role. Stratton earned a BS in accounting from BJU in 1981 and a PhD in business administration from the University of Georgia in 1994.
“One of my major priorities is faculty — both investing in current faculty and identifying new faculty members who understand the mission of Bob Jones,” Stratton said.
Dr. Stratton said he looks forward to working alongside the faculty in the School of Business, who are well qualified and servant minded. “I don’t have any doubt in my mind their desire to give of themselves,” Stratton said. “They have a heart for the students.”
Reflecting on when he filled in to teach a class for Dr. Buiter, Dr. Stratton had a positive experience interacting with those students. They were engaged and truly interested in the class.
Of the students he’s met this semester, Stratton said they are “confident in their direction but still open to advice and counsel.”
“I look forward to getting to know the students better.”
Another priority of Dr. Stratton’s is alumni relations. “The goal is connecting and reconnecting with our grads in the business world, both in Greenville and across the country.” Dr. Stratton’s hope is that these alumni connections will become a valuable resource for current students.
Stratton worked for creative marketing agency Jackson Dawson since 2014, where his role involved searching for talent and discovering people at an executive level. His role there evolved into an entrepreneurship role, helping Jackson Dawson launch a new company to expand into the healthcare industry. “That had given me an understanding of business from the foundation, and I was blessed to be a part of that,” said Stratton.
BJU’s emphasis on biblical worldview forms an integral part of curriculum across BJU courses, including in the School of Business. “Whether you’re business, engineering, science, education or whatever major you are, a biblical worldview underpins everything,” said Stratton. “Business has its own set of rules and regulations, but there is a more important set of guidelines — how we’re supposed to order our lives because of the grace that we have through Jesus.”
Dr. Stratton has had a strong connection with BJU for several years. “My parents were faculty here, and I saw firsthand the kind of sacrifice they were willing to make because they believed in what was going on here,” said Stratton. This realness and genuineness are what brought Dr. Stratton and his wife, Holly, to serve at BJU for 19 years.
Stratton worked as an accountant at Deloitte, then returned to BJU to be an accounting instructor in 1983. He served as Division of Accounting chair and then as dean of the School of Business from 1998-2002. He then became president of Clearwater Christian College in Clearwater, Florida. He served there for 10 years. After Clearwater, he served as executive pastor at Heritage Bible Church in Greer, South Carolina.
The BJU School of Business includes around 400 students, 15 faculty, six academic programs and almost 4,700 graduates.